60: Bridge Over Troubled Water (Simon & Garfunkel)

Album: Bridge Over Troubled Water
Artist: Simon & Garfunkel
Year: 1970

1. Bridge over Troubled Water
2. El Condor Pasa (If I Could)
3. Cecilia
4. Keep the Customer Satisfied
5. So Long, Frank Lloyd Wright
6. The Boxer
7. Baby Driver
8. The Only Living Boy in New York
9. Why Don’t You Write Me
10. Bye Bye Love
11. Song for the Asking

This may be the only time I can think of that a group or band with more than a couple albums had their very last one be their best. And it’s not even close. I can’t make it through any other Simon & Garfunkel album, despite loving songs on each of them. Scarborough Fair is one of my favorite songs, but the album it’s on is a snooze-fest. Bridge Over Troubled Water, on the other hand, is solid from beginning to end.

I’m not as huge of fan of the title track as most people are, but it’s a pretty solid ballad. Thankfully, the awesomeness keeps on coming. El Condor Pasa is a very pretty tune. Cecilia is goofy fun, and I love the clapping throughout. Keep the Customer Satisfied is a hidden gem, with one of my favorite choruses ever.

It’s the same old story
Everywhere I go,
I get slandered,
I hear words I never heard
In the Bible
And I’m one step ahead of the shoe shine
Two steps away from the county line
Just trying to keep my customers satisfied.

So Long, Frank Lloyd Wright is a touching obituary, and then we get The Boxer, a wonderful song with wonderful singing. It’s my second favorite S&G tune. Baby Driver is another fun, up-beat song.

Unfortunately, the album kind of whittles down after that. Bye Bye Love is a decent cover of the Everly Brothers hit, but I’d rather just be listening to the original. And why are we hearing it live? It makes for a very disjointed feeling, and would have been placed better at the end of the album. The other three songs are quite unmemorable, though they’re at least pleasant. Still, if this were a seven song album, it would likely place in my Top 25.

9 thoughts on “60: Bridge Over Troubled Water (Simon & Garfunkel)”

  1. used to own this album . . . I have no Simon and Garfunkel on my IPOD now . . . used to listen to them so much back when (in their great years), that I sort of got fried from their music. They did have great lyrics, though. I’m not sure which is my favorite song of theirs, but I always liked “I Am A Rock,” “Homeward Bound,” and “The Dangling Conversation,” none of which are on the soundtrack above. And when I was in high school, my art teacher played the song “Kodachrome” to a video (video meaning a screen projector back then), as in the video was synchronized to the song, and the pictures on the video were a combination of artwork done by my classmates and me in his class, with all these colors from our artwork flashing in tune to the song, and I thought that was way cool. I think my art teacher was trying to tell his students how art and music connect somehow. I can’t remember what I painted for that video.

  2. I hate “Cecilia” with a passion that burns so strongly it cannot be calmed. It’s probably my least favorite song by a band I really like.

    I do love the title track, though not as much as “The Boxer” (and possibly not as much as Eva Cassidy’s tortured, wrenching take on the title track). I didn’t realize that all these songs were on their last album, as I’m not such a big fan that I know the history.

      1. Heh, I’ve noticed that as well. In my case, I think my enjoyment was adversely affected by the obsession a lot of my college friends had with it. Shawn Ashley, though, made it somewhat charming by acting out the song as she danced to it, with the best part being that when they sing “Someone’s taken my place,” she does the thing where you simulate sex with one finger for a penis and the other hand acting as the vagina.

        And here is where you start getting weird searches leading to your site.

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